Local woman’s 80s homemade calendar with men doing chores goes viral on social media

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A calendar from 1988 has recently surfaced thanks to the internet. It was made in Seattle 33 years ago, but it went viral last month.

In 1987, Marilyn Cole, a Lynnwood mother of three, told FOX 13 News she was doing laundry with her sister Julie and watching TV when a show aired on Beefcake Schedules. They were brawny firefighter pinup calendars, which Cole says isn’t his ideal man.

“It’s not my idea of ​​a calendar, it’s not my fantasy,” Cole said. “I don’t want to look at muscle boys.”

She said it was men helping around the house, cleaning the toilets, helping with the baby and folding the laundry, that was what she was looking for.

So, with an obvious gap in the world of calendar publishing, Marilyn and her sister went to recruit men who matched their ideal man. They called modeling agencies and did scouting at local parks, followed by a rigorous interview process.

“They had to pose with the ironing board and their beach look with their muscles flexed and holding the iron and just getting those wrinkles out,” Cole said.

Twelve men were selected and the project was born in a studio in Seattle.

“The cost was very minimal because we did it all ourselves and staged it all with just our clothes and props,” Cole said. “We didn’t know what we were doing, but we were having fun.”

A month later, 5,000 prints were made and 3,200 calendars were sold. And that was it. Or so she thought.

Fast forward to 2021, one of their sons was home for Christmas, found the calendar, posted it on Twitter, and it went viral:

“When he tweeted it, I just thought he was crazy, and when the response started coming in. Wow,” Cole said.

Over 60,000 people liked the post and commented on their thoughts.

“There’s been a lot more positive response to this calendar this year than there ever was in 1988,” Cole said. “They loved that the men were helping with the chores and they looked happy.”

Cole said the fact that what they did over 30 years ago is still relevant today and still appreciated is “breathtaking”.

Cole told FOX 13 News she was going to reprint the 1988 calendar for 2022 with the current dates. It will also pick up a whole new schedule with more diverse programming and audience feedback on what tasks they’d like to see their partner do today. If you have any ideas, we’ll share your comments with Marilyn.

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